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Royal Palace of Madrid: Wikis

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North facade of the Royal Palace at night seen from the Sabatini Gardens.
West arcade of the Royal Palace seen from the Campo del Moro (royal gardens).
The south front of the Palacio Real embraces the Plaza de Armas with low ranges added in the 19th century.
East facade of the Royal Palace seen from Oriente Square.

The Palacio Real de Madrid (Royal Palace of Madrid), also known as the Palacio de Oriente (English: The East Palace), is the official residence of the King of Spain in the city of Madrid and it is only used for State Ceremonies. With an area of 135000 m2, it is the biggest palace in Europe.

However, King Juan Carlos and the Royal Family do not reside in in it, choosing instead the more modest Palacio de la Zarzuela on the outskirts of Madrid. The palace is owned by the Spanish State and administered by the Patrimonio Nacional, a public agency of the Ministry of the Presidency.

The palace is located on Bailén Street, in the Western part of downtown Madrid, East of the Manzanares River, and is accessible from the Ópera metro station. The palace is partially open to public, except when it is being used for official business.

The palace also has the distinction of being the largest royal palace in Europe in size, with a combined area of over 135,000 m² and more than 2,800 rooms.

Contents

History

The site of the palace dates from a 10th-century fortress, called mayrit, constructed as an outpost by Mohammed I, Emir of Córdoba and inherited after 1036 by the independent Moorish Kingdom of Toledo. After Madrid fell to Alfonso VI of Castile in 1085, the edifice was only rarely used by the kings of Castile. In 1329, King Alfonso XI of Castile convoked the cortes of Madrid for the first time. Philip II moved his court to Madrid in 1561.

The Antiguo Alcázar ("Old Castle") was built on the location in the 16th century. It burned on December 24, 1734; King Philip V ordered a new palace built on the same location. Construction spanned the years 1738 to 1755 and followed a Berniniesque design by Filippo Juvarra and Giovanni Battista Tiepolo in cooperation with Ventura Rodríguez, Francesco Sabatini, and Scirmento. The new palace, directly facing the cathedral across the Plaza de Armas, was occupied by Carlos III in 1764.

Interior

The interior that is open to visitors consists of:

  • the main staircase
  • Halberdiers Room
  • Hall of Columns
  • Throne Room
  • Saleta and antechamber of Charles III
  • Chamber and bedroom of Charles III
  • Gala Dining Room
  • Music Room
  • China collection
  • Royal Chapel
Throne room
The Royal Armoury (La Real Armería) museum
  • the imperial ballroom
  • the imperial bedchamber
  • 252 royal guest bedchambers
  • the diplomatic foreeea'
  • two grand maid's rooms
  • the blue porcelain room
  • the green porcelain room
  • the red reception room

Today

The vast palace is richly decorated by artists such as Velázquez, Tiepolo, Mengs, Gasparini, Juan de Flandes, Caravaggio, and Goya. Several royal collections of great historical importance are kept at the palace, including the Royal Armoury and weapons dating back to the 13th century, and the world's only complete Stradivarius string quintet, as well as collections of tapestry, porcelain, furniture, and other objects of great historical importance.

Below the palace, to the west, are the gardens of the Campo del Moro that were given this name due to the fact that here in the year 1109, Muslim leader Ali Ben Yusuf, encamped with his men in the attempt to recapture Madrid and its Alcázar (fortress) from the Christians. The east façade of the palace gives onto the Plaza de Oriente and the Teatro Real opera house. To the south is a vast square, the Plaza de la Armas, surrounded by narrow wings of the palace, and to the south of that is located the Catedral de la Almudena. To the north are the Jardines de Sabatini (Sabatini Gardens), named after one of the architects of the palace.

The wedding banquet of Prince Felipe and Letizia Ortiz took place on 22 May 2004 at the central courtyard of the Palace.

The palace is open to the public and it is closed when used by the king for state functions like state banquets for visiting heads of state, official government receptions and the presentation of new ambassadors to the king.

Coordinates: 40°25′5″N 3°42′50″W / 40.41806°N 3.71389°W / 40.41806; -3.71389

Gallery

See also

External links

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Simple English

[[File:|300px|thumb|right|The Palacio Real]] The Palacio Real de Madrid (Royal Palace of Madrid) is the official home of the King of Spain. It is located in Madrid, Spain. It is one of the largest palaces in western Europe. With a surface of 135,000 km2 and 3,418 rooms, is the biggest royal palace in Europe.

King Felipe V had the palace built to replace the Alcazar that was burned down. It is made of limestone and granite. It was supposed to look a little like the Versailles Palace in Paris, France. Juan Bautista Sachetti was in charge of building the palace. They started to build it in 1738. King Carlos III moved into the palace in 1764. It took a hundred years to decorate all the rooms.

Spanish kings lived there until 1931 when King Alfonso XIII was forced to leave Spain. The Royal Palace is still used for special ceremonies. Letizia was supposed to walk on a red carpet from the Royal Palace to the cathedral for the wedding with Prince Felipe but it rained so she was taken in car.

Fifty of the rooms in the palace are open for public visits. Visitors enter the palace from the Plaza de la Armería. Some of the rooms that can be seen are: the 'porcelain' room, 'throne' room and 'clock' room. There is a royal army museum in the palace.


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